Domestic dispute results in firearm charges

Published 9:00pm Friday, February 15, 2013


When Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to a domestic dispute on Oct. 21, 2012, a firearm found in the home led to charges against the couple living there, according to a press release from the sheriff’s office.

Deputies discovered there was a handgun in the home and that one of the residents, Johnny Ray Fillingame, 52, of Chocowinity, is a convicted felon, said the release. The firearm, which had been altered to remove the serial number, was confiscated by deputies.

Maj. Kenneth Watson, spokesman for the sheriff’s office, said that investigators had been unable to determine why the serial number had been removed.

“A possible explanation is that it’s a stolen firearm,” he said.

Watson said that there is a forensic method to try to recover the serial number by using acid to eat away at the surrounding metal, revealing the original marking.

“We attempted to the raise the number on that particular firearm and were unsuccessful,” Watson said.

Beyond serial numbers, there is no way to easily identify firearms and those confiscated in such cases are destroyed after the case has been resolved, said Watson.

Fillingame was charged with possession of firearm by felon and possession of firearm with altered serial number and Angela Gail Fillingame, 39, was also charged with possession of firearm with altered serial number.

On Feb. 7 Johnny Fillingame turned himself in and was held in the Beaufort County Detention Center on a $10,000 secured bond. Angela Fillingame turned herself in on Feb. 8, and was held on a $2000 secured bond.


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